Hawks Launch Venture Fund
The Atlanta Hawks have announced the launch of a $50 million venture fund called Hawks Ventures, aimed at supporting early-stage startups and businesses.
The fund will focus on minority and women-led and underrepresented businesses, and customer-obsessed businesses that have the potential to transform the way products or services are experienced.
Hawks Ventures is committed to providing the majority of its capital to startups over the next five years and finding strategic investments that can benefit the Hawks and/or State Farm Arena businesses.
The fund is rooted in the Hawks’ core value of inclusion, and the team hopes to use it as a way to make a positive impact on the community.
Commenting on the new fund, Hawks principal owner, Tony Ressler, said: “Hawks Ventures is exactly the kind of community-enhancing effort we committed to making when we purchased the team in 2015.”
“Creating a fund that could strategically enhance our business and leverage the experience and talents of our ownership group has been something that we have been working to put our resources and energy into from the beginning.
“Hawks Ventures is an endeavor that our ownership group is extremely passionate about, and we are excited to be able to invest in and work with the significant untapped potential of minority- and women-led entrepreneurs,” he said.
Leading the charge for Hawks Ventures is David Garcia, who was previously the Hawks’ senior vice president of experience and innovation.
On his appointment, Garcia, said: “I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to lead this initiative and to be able to meaningfully contribute to driving economic empowerment in underrepresented communities.”
“With the experience economy being a driving force of so much business value and our focus on diversity and inclusion, we believe there will be no shortage of great ideas and founders to invest in,” he said.
Garcia played a pivotal role in transforming the guest experience at State Farm Arena, helping to secure the top ranking in overall game experience for two consecutive seasons.